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"Zen and the Art of Quilting" Book Review posted: 10/28/2004
by Patricia Littlefield Printable Page
Category: Reviews Method: All
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Title: Zen and the Art of Quilting: Exploring Memory and Meaning in Patchwork
Author: Sandra Detrixhe
Publisher: Adams Media Corporation
Publication Date: September 2004
Pages: 80
ISBN #: 1593370938

Review: By Patricia Littlefield

For as long as I have been quilting, I have been searching for a book like Zen and the Art of Quilting, which is a book about how quilting makes you feel, not about how to quilt. Zen is not a religion, although it is usually associated with Buddhism, which also isnít really a religion. Zen is about our innermost life and achieving our greatest potential. It emphasizes process over product and the spiritual nature of ordinary activities, in this case, quilting.

Detrixhe points out that everything in the process of quilt making: choosing the fabric and pattern, cutting out the pieces, sewing them together and finally quilting them can be full of spiritual meaning. Making a quilt is a form of meditation: you are in a quiet surrounding, stilling still, and the moment-to-moment handling of the cloth and the in and out of the needle are activities that are equally absorbing and mind freeing.

Zen and the Art of Quilting is divided into ten chapters, each dealing with a part of the quilting process. Not every quilt is a Zen quilt, which Detrixhe says is one begun out of a desire to make it rather than to have it. She says you can look at her quilts and tell which ones are and which ones are not Zen quilts.

This book is probably not for every quilter but those who enjoy looking at things in a new light will love it as I did. Look for this book at your favorite quilt shop!

"A Zen quilt is one that comes from a desire to make it, not have it."

Adams Media Corporation
57 Littlefield Street
Avon MA 02322
508-427-6790 Fax

©2004 Patricia Littlefield

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